Alex Pereira: Jan Blachowicz dangerous, but ‘it’s a good first fight for me’ at light heavyweight

Former UFC middleweight champion Alex Pereira is happy to draw Jan Blachowicz in his light heavyweight debut.

Pereira (7-2 MMA, 4-1 UFC) meets Blachowicz (29-9-1 MMA, 12-6 UFC) in the UFC 291 co-main event on July 29 at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City.

Pereira will get to test himself against former light heavyweight champ Blachowicz right off the bat – an old foe of his training partner, Glover Teixeira, who dethroned Blachowicz with a dominant submission to become champ at UFC 267.

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“My next opponent will be Jan Blachowicz,” Pereira said on his YouTube channel. “He is a dangerous guy, an experienced guy, and a guy we know because of my training partner, Glover Teixeira, who fought him. I’m sure training hard and together with Glover, he will pass me a lot of stuff for sure like he is always doing.

“Everybody knows Blachowicz is a dangerous guy, an all-rounder, but I think it’s a good first fight for me. When I saw my first fight, some people will think, ‘Oh, that’s an easy opponent.’ No, all of you know my story. I was middleweight champ. So, for sure, they wanted to give me one of the top-five ranked. For me, it wasn’t a surprise. We were negotiating a while. I was waiting for him. So, that’s it.”

Pereira’s move up a weight class comes after losing his middleweight title to Israel Adesanya by knockout at UFC 287 in April. The defeat was Pereira’s first to Adesanya in four combat sports matches. Prior to that, “Poatan” topped Adesanya twice in kickboxing, and once in MMA to capture the middleweight title at UFC 281.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 291.



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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie